Fitness Nutrition Forums

The 5 Worst Items at Cheesecake Factory

Fitday Editor
In the third part of our 10-part series on eating at chain restaurants, we take a look at Cheesecake Factory. Check out part two, where we examine Denny's.

In this day and age, most restaurants, chain or otherwise, do a pretty good job of being transparent with what goes into their dishes. However, some chains do not provide nutritional information on their website. Cheesecake Factory is one of those places. While their website does acknowledge that their food is prepared fresh and from top quality ingredients, they don't list the nutrition information.

So, using various resources on the web and otherwise, including disclosure laws and suits in different states that have made Cheesecake Factory disclose some of their facts, we'll present the things you should avoid, and what to eat instead, based on current estimates of their nutritional values. Please note, that while we did our best to find and provide the correct nutritional information, not everything on this list may be fully up-to-date or accurate.

DON'T EAT: Buffalo Blasts

Perhaps one of the worst appetizer items for you, the Buffalo Blasts are estimated to pretty much ruin your diet. With over 4,000 mg of sodium, at least 17 grams of saturated fat, and clocking in at over 1,000 calories, you should definitely back away from the Buffalo Blasts slowly, with your hands where we can see them.

INSTEAD EAT: Opt instead for the Cup of Soup (though it is still high in sodium) or if you need some substance, try the Edamame.

DON'T EAT: Factory Nachos with Spicy Chicken

The trend I'm seeing is that most appetizers only serve to make us overeat by loading you up on high-calorie, high-fat foods that don't make you feel full. The Factory Nachos do that trick, too. Based on estimates, we're looking at over 2,000 calories, upwards of 60 grams of saturated fat, and somewhere near 2,800 mg of sodium.

INSTEAD EAT: I would instead suggest skipping the appetizers all together, or opting for a Side Salad. You can't go wrong, except if you drench it in ranch.

DON'T EAT: Factory Burrito Grande

Even though, in my young, high metabolism days I would have stood up to the challenge, the Factory Burrito Grande is yet another poor decision in my history of poor decision making. It clocks in at close to 2,000 calories (about 1,850), or what you should eat in an entire day! Also, the near 4,000 mg of sodium and 27 grams of saturated fat put the Factory Burrito Grande in the running for the triple crown of terrible for you.

DON'T EAT: Bistro Shrimp Pasta/Pasta Carbonara with Chicken

Making waves lately, and not for good reason, the pasta dishes at Cheesecake Factory have come under scrutiny for their terrible nutritional values. The two you should avoid like the plague are the Bistro Shrimp Pasta and the Carbonara with Chicken. Both clocking in at about 2,300 calories, they tip the scales at, respectively, 73 grams and 81 grams of saturated fat.

INSTEAD EAT: If you have a carb kick, may I instead suggest that you stick with the Pasta Puttanesca.

DON'T EAT: Miso Salmon

The sure thing on any menu if you want to go healthy is the fish, right? Well, at the Cheesecake Factory you'd be wrong. The Miso Salmon has about 1,700 calories, plus unhealthy levels of fat (39 grams) and sodium (2,420 mg).

INSTEAD EAT: Not all fish dishes are created equally here at the Cheesecake Factory. They offer plenty of really healthy options in this category, including the Grilled Catch of the Day, and the grilled options of Tuna, Salmon and Mahi. These are my three recommendations for any and all comers to the Cheesecake Factory, as they are low in calories, but high in omega-3, healthy fats and low on the sodium side.

The 5 Worst Items at Denny's

Ryan Barnhart, MS, PES, is a certified Performance Enhancement and Injury Prevention Specialist through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM). He also holds a master's degree in exercise science, as well as a bachelor of sport management, both from California University of Pennsylvania. Ryan has worked with numerous professional, collegiate and amateur athletes across many different fields, including professional and arena football players, Mixed Martial Artists, elite runners, international soccer players, and more.

Ryan is currently the director of fitness at a 700+ member gym near Pittsburgh, PA, as well as the owner and operator of Funky Fitness PA, a personal training studio, in home personal training and personalized fitness planning service. Ryan's work has been featured across the US and the globe, working with clients in all facets of life. He enjoys working with weekend warriors, athletes, and everyone in between. You can check Ryan out on Facebook or follow him on Twitter, or you can reach him at [email protected].

{{ oArticle.title }}

{{ oArticle.subtitle }}